Hesitation over tackling climate change could be catastrophic, Prince Charles has told global warming experts.
Speaking at St James’ Palace, in London, the prince said: “It seems to me that in many ways we already have some of the answers to hand.
“We know about energy efficiency, renewable energy, and how to reduce deforestation… but we seem strangely reluctant to apply them,” he went on.
He said he hoped the scientists could influence a conference in Copenhagen.
It is hoped nations can agree to a deal on cutting carbon emissions at the climate change conference in the Danish capital in December. The prince said he hoped it would be a “historic occasion”.
The symposium of more than 60 scientists, among them 20 Nobel Laureates, is examining the latest developments about climate change.
On Thursday, they are expected to sign an agreed memorandum of their findings.
The prince told them: “I don’t know about your own experience, but it seems to me that whilst there is now only a mercifully small, if vociferous, number of people who do not accept the science of climate change and who should know better, there are still a great many who fail to recognised the real urgency of the situation.
“In so many ways we already are in the last chance saloon.”
“So, somehow, global decision makers have to be persuaded that strong, committed and co-ordinated action is needed now, not in 10 years’ time, or even in five, but now.”